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Crit Care Clin. 2000 Jul;16(3):473-88.

Surgical airway management in the intensive care unit.

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Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, USA.


Despite having been a known surgical procedure for over 5000 years, the specifics of how, when, and why to perform a surgical airway are still debated. With new procedures, equipment, and techniques, operative airway management is becoming more complex. New methods of surgical airway management have to be evaluated against the gold standard, which will always be the open tracheostomy performed in the operating room. Unlike Dr. Jackson in 1909, surgeons today have to evaluate these new procedures not only by their efficacy but also by their cost effectiveness.

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